Molly And Pim And The Millions Of Stars

Martine Murray

Molly And Pim And The Millions Of Stars
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Molly And Pim And The Millions Of Stars

Martine Murray

Molly’s mother is not like other mothers: she rides a yellow bike and collects herbs and makes potions, perhaps even magical potions. Molly wants to be normal, like her friend Ellen, and watch television and eat food that comes in packets. But when Molly’s mother accidentally turns herself into a tree, Molly turns to the strange and wonderful Pim for help. And as they look for a way to rescue her mother, Molly discovers how to be happy with the oddness in her life.

Martine Murray’s new illustrated middle-grade novel Molly and Pim and the Millions of Stars is a whimsical story about friendship and individuality and learning to see the freshness and wonder in the world.

Review

It has been a few years since we last had the pleasure of a novel for 9-12 year olds by Melbourne author Martine Murray, and this story was well worth the wait. Sensitive and wonderfully eccentric, Molly and Pim and the Millions of Stars captures that tender time towards the end of primary school when your ideas about yourself, your family and your home environment are tested.

For Molly, a test arises when she begins to worry that her chances of being accepted by her peers are reduced because her mother has a few quirks, and their home is rambling instead of conventional. She’s particularly sensitive to the contrast she perceives between herself and her best friend, Ellen. Ellen’s house is neat and prim. Ellen gets muesli bars in her lunchbox (in packets…Molly would love to have food ‘in packets’). Ellen’s mother doesn’t go on and on about healing herbs, or walk around barefoot and ruminate on a beautiful sky. Molly hopes that by rejecting what her mother holds dear - knowledge of the nutritional goodness to be found right under our noses, in common weeds and herbs - she can avoid having anyone think of her as ‘weird’. Still, she can’t help her fascination with a boy called Pim, who really doesn’t seem to care what people think of him at all.

I won’t spoil how Molly’s test plays out, because it is unique, surprising, and allows Martine Murray to explore some highly astute and affecting observations about the parent-child relationship, as well as how our personal problems stack up against a whole world of individuals who will at some point suffer pain and confusion.

This is a beautiful, hopeful book.

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